Seminary Program

This is where we post the essays from many of our Universal Life Church Seminary students. When students finish a ULC course, they write a comprehensive essay about their experiences with the course, what they learned, didn't learn, were inspired by, etc. Here are their essays.

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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Gospel of Thomas -- ULC

Gospel of Thomas
Submitted by Joy Maestas

I do have a somewhat different perspective on these teachings then my Teacher, so hopefully he will have an open mind on my perspective.  I will be reading more to learn about this Divine web but my take is from a Christian back ground not a Catholic one so I see differences in our perception.  The Kingdom Jesus refers to is the real kingdom in Heaven where our Father and Jesus are now residing.  I see beyond the physical and know the real Kingdom is not yet come to this plane. Coming to self knowledge it the knowledge in Christ that all things are created through him and without him nothing exists.  Without him in us we do not exist but are spiritually dead and there for misfortune.

I can understand how you would call this world a Divine Web as everything in this world is connected, every creature, plant, human has the same make up and I think I just had a epiphany in understanding the Divine web.
4. Jesus said, "An old man will not be reluctant to ask a little child of seven days about the dwelling of life, and he will become one and the same."
I love this quote, as in  Matthew 18:2 he stated “And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
To be innocent as a child, not hating, blindly trusting, loving all.  I don’t know how Baptism is in the Catholic church but for Christians it is the outward sign that we have giving ourselves to Christ and we are putting the old life behind (going under the water) and living now as a disciple of Jesus (coming out of the water). It has nothing to do with forgiveness of sin.  When he (Jesus) shed his blood on the cross is when our sin was washed out and we were make clean in the sight of our Father.
Again our back grounds clash, as I whole heartedly believe Jesus was the Jewish Messiah, he taught over and over his kingdom of which he ruled was not of this earth and he was a Rabbi/Teacher and as High Priest Offered himself as the Lamb sacrifice which was the offering for sin. He is still Jewish and still their Messiah, more Jews today are turning and accepting Jesus as their Risen Messiah then ever before and I and they await his return.  I have studied a lot in the Jewish history and Talmud.

Number 5, We do agree this Thomas was around and part of the original group that followed Jesus, so this quote is found in Matthew and Luke.
Matthew 10:26

“So do not be afraid of them. There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known.

Luke used it twice to make a point, Luke 8:17
For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open.
Luke 12:2 There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known.
When we reach our Spiritual Father who is in Heaven with my Savior Jesus that is when we will have that which is concealed made known and that which is hidden will come to light.  In this end times and yes I believe we are in the end times before his return.  We are increasing in knowledge some man made some revealed by the Holy Spirit to us. As we progress in our spiritual journey the mysteries that are hidden from in the scriptures are made known to us.  One person is not awake can read the same passages and get nothing, another who is awake will read it and it can be life changing.  Awake meaning spiritually not physically.

#6 Refers to their Jewish upbringing where they were instructed to fast at certain times and the prayers were ritual and not from the heart. Giving to charity was a new thing as they only gave to the temple and they were instructed not to eat certain foods.  Jesus was trying to let them know to not to imitate the teachers of his time but instructed them to fast but not let any one know as this is something to do and it is for revelation from the Father and when praying to do so until the Father and recognize him 1st.  Later when he gave revelation to Paul that no food was unclean as it was all created by the Father, this was a real eye opener for them as up to that time they were still only eating what Jewish law considered to be clean.

I find the Book of Thomas totally fascinating as it reinforces what Matthew, Mark and Luke and Paul,wrote also.  I even ordered the Nag Hammadi Library so I can read the other papers found.
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